Thursday, October 21, 2010

Roasted Red Pepper, Tomato and Anchovy Linguine

There are many fabulous pasta recipes, but sometimes we create a sauce at the spur of the moment, based on what we happen to have on hand. This is what happened the other night, and much to my amazement a new creation was born — Roasted Red Pepper, Tomato and Anchovy Linguine. It was delicious, and way too easy, especially with my secret weapon! The sauce is actually a combination of 2 classic sauces: Broccoli and Anchovy Sauce and Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Sauce. The first, Broccoli and Anchovy, is a classic Italian sauce that sounds odd but would surprise you how tasty it is. The second, Roasted Red Pepper and Tomatoes, is a popular recipe with numerous adaptations, including one of my favourites — Fettuccine Natasha, which includes smoked salmon and caviar!

Roasted Red Pepper, Tomato and Anchovy Linguine

1 bunch fresh broccoli
3 tbsp olive oil
8 anchovies, chopped fine
1/2 tsp dried red chili flakes
2 cups Pacific Foods Organic Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup*
1 package dried linguine, spaghettini or tagliatelle pasta
1 cup fresh grated parmesan or pecorino
italian parsley or basil for garnish
  1. Detach the broccoli florets from the stalks, discard the stalks, and finely chop the florets. Put the oil in a sauté pan and over medium-high heat, add the florets, anchovies and red chili flakes. Cook, stirring and mashing the florets and anchovies with the back of a wooden spoon, until they are cooked through and dissolve into a paste, about 10-15 minutes. 
  2. Add the roasted red pepper and tomato soup, turn the heat down to medium and stir to combine.
  3. Bring a large pot of water to boil for the pasta. Cook according to the directions, then drain in a colander, and return to the pot. Combine the sauce with the cooked pasta and warm through. 
  4. Serve in warmed pasta bowls and garnish with sprig or sprinkle of fresh parsley, and grated cheese on the side. Magnifico!
* My secret weapon — Pacific Foods Organic Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Soup! It's smooth, luscious and very tasty — organic to boot! Alternatively, you can prepare a homemade sauce, shown below.

Homemade Roasted Red Pepper and Tomato Sauce 

2 heads of garlic
1 lb plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise 
1 lb red peppers
3 tbsp cream
2 tsp olive oil
  1. Preheat oven to 375°. Cut off and discard the top quarter of the garlic and wrap the remainder in foil. Arrange the tomatoes, cut side up, on a foil-lined baking pan and sprinkle lightly with salt. Add the whole bell peppers and garlic to the pan and roast together for 1 hour.
  2. Transfer the pepper to a bowl and cover with plastic wrap and let stand 1/2 hour. When cool enough to handle, peel the peppers, discarding stem and seeds, and transfer to a food processor and blend with the tomatoes. Unwrap the garlic and squeeze the roasted cloves from the skin into the processor, and purée until smooth. Add cream and mix to combine. This can be made 1 day ahead and chilled, covered. Makes 1 1/2 cups.